I’m Happy (ish)

Phew. The first week back is done.

I bet you thought I wasn’t going to thank all of you for your support. Well you were wrong.

I just didn’t want to start the week off with some sad, thank you letter about how all of you helped not only myself, but the rest of my family to keep going.

Because this breakup of mine didn’t just affect me, it affected my entire family. His entire family. Everyone in the world practically.

Yup. I had the breakup that changed the world.

Not really, but as you can imagine it felt that way at times. I know a lot of my family members read the comments and I read them out loud to them over the phone sometimes too.  Just knowing someone is thinking of you can’t change your situation, but it can change your mood.

I don’t want any of you worrying about me anymore because I’m fine.  In fact I’d say I’ve adjusted to my new life remarkably fast.  And remarkably well.

I don’t mean to make any of you jealous but I can eat dinner whenever I want and I never, ever, EVER have to watch war reenactments on The History Channel again. Ever.

Prior to the fella, and yes, there was life before the fella, I absolutely loved being alone.  And I love it again.  There is one thing I miss especially. And it’s a strange thing.  It’s what we hated to do as a child.  Sharing.

I miss sharing food and stories and laughter.  You know that moment when you’re watching a television show and something hilarious happens and you look over at the person next to you on the couch?  I don’t have that anymore.

But it’s not the end of the world and I figured out a way around the loss of sharing thing.

I share my food with family members, I share my stories on this website and when I’m in need of sharing some laughter I go outside and gather the neighbours around to look at my 10 foot tall tomato plant wrapping its branches around my entire porch.  It’s more of a nervous laughter.  It’s a scary, scary tomato plant.

So as I was saying, don’t worry about me.  Fella or not I have a good life.

Thank you again to everyone.  My mother, my sisters, my nieces.  All rallying around me in a show of support.

I was shocked and amazed at how many people who have never commented before felt compelled to comment.  I was stunned at how many people sent me emails and presents.  Friends, long lost family members, old co-workers, and readers came out of the woodwork  just to let me know they were thinking of me.  I couldn’t get over the amount of people actually.

I’d have a way better funeral turnout than I ever thought.

And the money.   Thank you to every single person who donated  $2, $10 or $20.  I’m not exactly destitute, but it allowed me to take those few weeks off without worrying.

I’m sorry I couldn’t reply to all of your emails and comments. There were just so many.

And finally I wanted to share with you one of my favourite comments.  This person read my bad news on their birthday and decided I could use their birthday wish more than they could.  They  bestowed upon me their birthday wish.

So I took it.

And I wished for the very same thing I’ve wished for since I was little. I don’t wish for material things and I don’t wish for things to happen.

Every time I ever get a wish, I wish for the very same thing.

To be happy.

Because that’s what it all leads to, right? We wish for money in the hope it’ll make us happy. We wish for a loved one to return hoping it’ll make us happy. We wish the troubles, turmoil and tragedy to go away … so we can be happy.  The thing is, we don’t always know what will make us happy.  We think we do. But we’re not always right.

I thought a spiral perm in grade 11 would make me happy.  It did not.

So, I figure let’s cut to the chase and wish for the ultimate goal in everyone’s life.  Happiness.

Thank you all for helping to make me happy(ish) again.

210 Comments

  1. Carolyn says:

    I am happy you are happy(ish)!! I am also happy that you are back to posting because I’ve missed your wit & the laughs it brings me.

  2. Maggie V says:

    Glad the sun is starting to shine for you again Karen. Like I said “Been there done that” and it takes time to recover but recover you will. I wish you all the best.

  3. Nancy Eileen says:

    Beautiful, Karen :). Your happiness is important to us all.

  4. SuzyM says:

    Welcome backish. Happy to hear that you are taking time for yourself and have embraced the life you have now.

    I missed you too. I think the thing that binds all of us here together is that we GET you and that you GET us. It’s a community girlfriend, of chicken tenders and wanna be tenders, do it yourselfers, cooks and gardeners and lovers of life and thoughtful wit!

    You are loved and happily embraced! All the best, always.

  5. Cathy says:

    A Havanese will make you smile every time AND keep Norma, et al, in line ( used as poultry herders in Havana) . Fromm dog food keeps poo small,less stinky.
    Just sayin’

  6. Susan says:

    You struck a chord about the sharing…when I lost my husband, that was the worst part of the loss. Having someone who knows or knows about the people in your life or your quirky (warped) sense of humour and that “I can’t wait to get home to tell him!” Otherwise, it’s nice to do what you want when you want, eat when and what you want and go to bed when you want. Or not. Unfortunately, you will begin to do a lot of talking to yourself. Out loud. Full conversations. Luckily, you have cats and chickens in case you’re overheard but it’s best to converse with yourself in their presence, just in case. Stay away from open windows and Facebook and you’ll be fine.

  7. marilyn says:

    karen ..glad you are back and happy(ish) ..we are responsible for our own happiness in whatever form it comes in.i find that being the best person i can be makes me happiest..kindness to others and also taking time for myself (yes..vacations are necessary..lol) are things that help me a lot.and FAMILY ..whatever form your family takes they are vital to your happiness.they have your back and their love is unconditional.in my own experience anyway however i have an unusually close family.hang in there kid ..we need ya! xo

  8. Ev says:

    Well done and well said. Life goes on. Good luck to you, Karen. Missed this post so much and glad you’re back! Ev

  9. christine says:

    That made me cry….and I never cry.

  10. Cathy says:

    Yours is the first blog I ever subscribed to and the one I always visit no matter how busy life gets. Your original announcement made me cry and I admire your bravery in putting yourself out there like that.

    Change is tough…you are gonna have great days and then you are gonna have really crappy ones. I mean sit on the couch-eat a gallon of ice cream while watching some stupid cry baby movie crappy ones.

    What you will find though is how much you will discover about yourself during this time. No matter how independent you are in a relationship, you still compromise part of yourself for the other person. Now is the time to explore all the other parts of Karen that may have been laying quiet for the past years. Can’t wait to see what kind of adventures you take us along on during this journey!!

    Remember, we all love you…and the chickens…and the cats.

  11. Ali says:

    Trust me soon you are actually going to find this phase in your life VERY fun & empowering.

    ps. My guest suite in Cayman is still open 🙂 direct flight from Toronto….just saying.

  12. Pam says:

    I’m glad you are feeling happy. I wish more happiness for you, strength on the days you forget ‘happy’ and above all I wish for more wishes (because that’s the best thing to do with your last wish. I learned that in grade 4)
    Enjoy remembering where you came from and exploring the possibilities of who you will become. It’s the best part of living.
    p.

  13. Ruth says:

    {{{HUGS}}} I’m glad you’re happy(ish}. I’ll be awaiting the spiral perm photo. Hehe…

  14. Su Holohan says:

    It’s amazing how the people we love and know can pick our srry asses up and drag us along when we don’t think we have the means to do it…. very humbling and healing.
    At a very low point in my life I once went to a card reader who told me make a wish before we started.. at the end she looked at me and said you will find peace and happiness… I believe the same of you… 🙂

  15. janr says:

    Thanks for the brave honesty it took to let us know your situation. I know its devastating. I know there is a child involved. Male mid life crisis is not a joke. Its real and painful for everyone it touches. You have the loving, quiet support of anyone its ever touched.

  16. Suanne says:

    I add my “happy-ish-ness” to all the others in knowing that you are healing and are able to lean on the support of those around you who care. We, your blog family, care. Thank YOU for caring enough about us to share in one of your most painful experiences. You’re doing GREAT!

  17. Cindy says:

    Today I’m hoping that a Christina Hendricks/Joan Harris haircut will make me happy. I’m hoping that works out better than your spiral perm!

    Very good to see you back! There are a lot of fun things to experience ahead of you!

  18. Elaine says:

    I am glad that you are doing well. I so missed your blog and am pleased that you are once again sharing your stories with us. A nice way to start the day over coffee.

    Cheers,

  19. Barb says:

    You go, girl! Your happishness is an inspiration to all of us in the boat with you- if you can do it, surely we can, too!

  20. Noelle says:

    I am so relieved to know you are on your way back to happiness(ish).
    I became rather concerned and as how I would regularly read your Blog as my fav, I realized I had better subscribe otherwise I was no better than a cyber stalker. So this morning seeing your post made a surprising impact on me…funny, how much I appreciate how you are willing to put so much of yourself “out there” to share, and what an incredible job that you do.
    Little do you know Karen, you are my friend and I grieved for you, just as I laughed with you and grew concerned with you (limping chicken), but you are right, you must take time now and then. As we are your Friends we will certainly understand!

  21. Lynn says:

    I’ll take happy”ish” any day! I could also live alone and do well with it. You rock, Karen!

  22. cred says:

    I’m so glad to hear that you are starting to adjust to living alone- it definitely has it’s perks. My sisters and I, all very independent and pretty capable woman, often lament the inconvenience of living with our partners. When you’ve lived alone for a long time, living with someone can be a pain in the butt.
    But for sure the companionship is good, otherwise we wouldn’t put up with the burping, farting or snoring… and that was when my sister was living with me ; )
    Seriously, I’m glad you seem to have a good perspective and so much support, both from family and this online community you’ve created.
    all the best,
    Cindy

  23. Jenny W says:

    Karen! I’m afraid you have turned me into a bit of a thief 😉
    You see, I “steal” your decor ideas, your recipes, your book lists. I copy your craft ideas and centerpieces. I even “creep” your chickens on the internet lol! & Yet again you have encouraged me to take something that doesn’t belong to me – your wish – From now on, I too shall wish for happiness 🙂 Whenever I see a shooting star, blow out a candle, or catch a ladybug crawling on me. Thank you, for putting into words something that I could not.

  24. Bonnie G. says:

    Welcome back! Life really is a series of ups and downs but you have a good attitude, and, not to be trite, time heals. It really is good to see that you are up and running and I hope that wish for happiness always stays true for you!

  25. Sian says:

    So glad you’re back and I’m sure you’ll be even happier than Larry in no time at all.(when I was young I thought they meant Leisure Suit Larry and couldn’t understand wtf that was all about). The dinner thing will help – my partner is currently away and there was such joy in getting home and thinking ‘f&&& it, it’s 5.30 – it’s dinner time’ and not being judged or made to eat(or make) real food. A nice glass of red and some leftover mashed potato is the dinner of champions. And none of that paleo garbage – we evolved for a bloody reason, and that’s to eat brie and pate and chips etc etc etc. So live it up Karen, both single and in a relationship statuses have their up and down sides, you seem like the kind of classy lady that can make either bundles of fun. Cheers, Sian.

  26. Deb says:

    Consider yourself hugged!

  27. So thrilled to read this, and to know you are ok. I was delighted to see you back on Monday cos I missed you.
    Good on ya for bouncing back; I know it can’t have been easy, but you’re strong stuff.

  28. Lu says:

    I tried out a new look with eyeliner this morning, forgetting the reason i don’t wear it is because i cry tears of laughter and sadness and empathy really easily. I remember the feeling of feeling happy again after a (car crash of a ) marriage break up and am so happy (tears) that you were able to share the affection with your family and friends.(stinging happy tears) …binning the eyeliner x

  29. Jill says:

    I, too, thought a spiral perm would make me happy in grade 11. I was wrong. Makes you wonder if a spiral perm ever made anyone happy.

  30. Mary says:

    In my humble opinion, your best post ever. Thanks for sharing.

  31. Larraine says:

    As Thomas Jefferson wrote in the U.S. Declaration of Independence in 1776, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all humans have been endowed by their Creator with unalienable rights to Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness” and Jefferson was a self-professed Epicurean who believed in self-sufficiency. If Happiness is important enough for the Declaration of Independence, it must be Very Important indeed! Long live the pursuit! Tally ho!!!

  32. Caron says:

    Karen – I went through what you did about 5 years ago. I started afresh at the age of 40. So, I created a mantra to help me through … the first 20 years belonged to my parents, the following 20 years belonged to the ex, these 20 years belong to me and the next 20 years (or so) belong to the universe!

  33. Amanda says:

    I’m so glad that you are doing well, Karen! You are awesome and your blog is a treasure. Thank you for all you do! And, thank you for sharing your story with all of us readers. It allows for us to help you!

  34. Karin says:

    You are back, Karen!
    That’s wonderful news!
    Greetings and best wishes
    Karin

  35. Shauna says:

    Happy to have you back and happy(ish). This is the only blog that I read regularly and I find it amazing how all of your readers feel a connection to you. Not in a stalker way, but like we’ve known you for years and actually hang out. It’s hard to believe with all the good wishes, that the majority of us have never and will never even meet you.

    Thank you for giving us all a moment in our days to laugh, connect & learn that we can do just about anything you teach us to do:)

  36. Laura Bee says:

    So well said.
    If this was real life – sorry – if I was actually sitting with you, now would be the time I would give you a hug. Strange as it is, this is part of real life now. Hell, if my cousin can find two boyfriends online – I can find a new friend.
    The band played this tonight & I danced:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R42zFe0-t_k

    It’s one of my happy songs

  37. Summer Lindsey says:

    Karen, When I read the post before your um, time-off, I was so touched. I went about my day thinking of you. When I sat with my chickens, I thought of you. I was riding in the car & looked over at my husband & I thought of you. I told him about your post & we rode quietly together thinking of you. You are handling this with all the style and honesty as all your endeavors. Thank you for sharing with us.

  38. Ember says:

    Glad you are doing well. God is good and can get you through anything. I love reading your posts, they never fail to make me smile. Its good to have you back!

  39. Ellen Partridge says:

    Want to be alone but still have companionship? Rescue a dog. Seriously, it will change your life. S/he may not get the good jokes on TV, but they’ll be happy and excited when you do. And that’s a form of sharing.

    • Karen says:

      LOL. I’ve thought about getting a dog for years Ellen, but the truth is I have an exhausting amount of poo to clean up with 2 cats and 4 chickens. ~ karen!

      • Kim says:

        The right dog will change your world in the BEST way. Humans? Who needs them….except you of course. And I don’t have to deal with you in person. heehee

      • Candace says:

        I’ll just have to counter that argument by saying any dog that I’ve ever met would gladly “clean up” the cat poo for you anytime!

      • Barbie says:

        Poop aside, my dogs were my saving grace and sanity during my divorce. It was wonderful to have them look at me with unconditional love during a time when I felt very unloved. Between the dogs and my family, I’ve made a good recovery and couldn’t be happier. Being alone does not equal being lonely!

    • Hunter says:

      I second the thought of rescuing a dog. My two rescues make me laugh every day and provide so much love! Poo aside, they’re great companions. I am so happy to hear that you are doing well and hope you continue to heal.

  40. Jenny says:

    Yay! So glad to read this. I was watching your Kitchen Tile video a couple nights ago, and thought what man in his right mind could leave a lady like this?? Seriously. You DO Stuff. Hello? Anyway, I too live alone and love it. So, so glad that you can embrace it again. It’s wonderful.

    • Pam'a says:

      Sadly, sometimes it’s precisely BECAUSE a woman can “do stuff” that things don’t work out. You get too darned capable, and a lot of guys just can’t figure out what you need them for.

      The real catch is the one who doesn’t need to be needed; he only wants to be wanted, and only by you.

  41. Sarah and Bruce says:

    Karen, as much as I wish I could, I cannot express in words how much I adore you (and
    Hugs and love,
    Sarah

  42. Kristin says:

    You are awesome. I would have sent you money if I had known how to do that. (Not a ton, jeez, I have bills to pay, but a few clams for my DIY sister who needed a bit of a break for a change.) I love how you made yourself happy again. It’s a real talent, being happy, and you have it. Congratulations!

  43. I’m so glad you’re back, and happy(ish). I love your wish too! You put it perfectly!

  44. Laura says:

    You sure are amazing.

    • Karen says:

      LOL! I’m not sure why you think that but I’m flattered. 🙂 ~ karen!

      • Tricia says:

        You are amazing, a true inspiration to other women around the world who thought that they could never do the art of doing stuff…. most women will never have the talent that you have, or be able to achieve what you do, but your site is a real motivation to do the best that they can and reach a higher, so better. Gosh, and your humor? I love to laugh, you do that very well, too! Happy that you’re happy (ish)…. You are on your way!

  45. Linda R says:

    It would make me happy if I could see a pic of that spiral perm. Well, it might make me laugh, and that almost always makes me happy.

    • Karen says:

      Linda R – You’d REALLY laugh if you saw the picture!!! The only picture I have of that spiral perm is a picture that was taken of me the night after having all 4 wisdom teeth removed! My face was HUGE. I look like I’d just had a liver transplant. I’ll see if I can dig it up. ~ karen!

      • I wish I had taken pictures of *my* spiral perm, because it fell right out the next day. Sigh. I did *not* look like Madonna in the “Lucky Star” video and I was also not happy. Seeing yours might make me feel better though…. 🙂

  46. Alyssa says:

    I bought a bag of dill pickle chips tonight in celebration of your 10,000 FB fans. I had a mild panic attack in the grocery aisle because I wasn’t sure what brand, I felt like maybe it was Old Dutch, but Superstore didn’t even have those, so I settled on Lays.

    Yours is one of the few blogs I keep coming back to, and I grieved for you many times while you were away. I am so glad you are back, doing stuff, and being happy(ish). Thanks for Doing Stuff.

  47. Pati Gulat says:

    I am glad we were able to give you some measure of comfort during that tough time, Karen. We truly care about you. After all, you are a part of our lives !

  48. Suzanne in Austin, Texas says:

    You are so awesome and I am glad that you felt the love of and were comforted by so many. That is what makes the world go round. May you continue to go from strength to strength!

  49. Marti says:

    You are so cared about, Karen. I hope that brings you a little boost now and then. Whatever else most of us do or don’t do on any given day, we check here because we like you.

    Missed you while you were away. Didn’t want you to hurry back on our account, but this was a great, meaningful week for us and you. Thanks for joining the world again. We missed you.

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Marti. The other thing I discovered about taking that time off was I NEED TO REGULARLY TAKE TIME OFF. Doing this whole creative thing every single day all day long is hard. I love it, but taking a real break like that (no facebook, no twitter, no posts, no nothin’) made me realize it’s essential for me to do good work! Gives me time to work on stuff, come up with ideas, relax my brain. Who knew! People need vacations! ~ karen

    • Alice says:

      What she said.

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